Irith is committed to using pet-friendly methods and treating both animals and humans with respect and compassion. She believes that training should be enjoyable for all involved, people and pets alike.
To maintain her high standard of excellence, keep up with advances in science-based animal training, and cultivate new techniques, Irith regularly attends seminars, courses, and workshops. She has also been a featured speaker for the Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT). In addition, Irith is one of National English Shepherd Rescue's coordinators for the Western United States.
Although her focus is on training dogs, Irith also has experience training other animals, such as cats, rabbits, horses and chickens. She is fluent in English, Hebrew, and Japanese, and can train your pet using any of those languages.
The Sophisticated Dog uses positive reinforcement methods, often in the form of clicker training, to train your pets. Positive reinforcement means rewarding your pet for doing the right thing, rather than punishing your pet for doing the wrong thing. Animals trained through positive reinforcement methods enjoy the learning process and learn more quickly, which means faster, and more lasting, results.
Clicker training and other forms of positive reinforcement training have a long history of success, as well as a wealth of science supporting their use. For decades, marine mammal trainers at facilities such as Shedd Aquarium in Chicago have been using what is essentially clicker training to teach their animals tricks.
Zoos, including the San Diego Zoo, now use clicker training for everything from teaching animals to submit to medical care voluntarily (which avoids the need for anesthesia) to enriching animals' lives through games and other rewarding activities.
Clicker training helps us bridge the gap between humans and non-humans. It can be used with any verterbrate animal (and even some invertebrates). It is a simple technique that allows you to communicate with your pets without prompts, manipulation, or force. Clicker training transforms pets, since you and the world they live in suddenly make so much more sense to them. Clicker training is also a great way to provide your pet with mental and physical exercise.